Would you still be a Christian even if there were no heaven, no eternity, no resurrection? I have heard some people make that claim, but I myself cannot adhere to it. Such people have said, “The Christian life is the best life, even if there were no heaven.” The sentiment is an admirable one — but it doesn’t find much scriptural support, especially in the writings of the Apostle Paul, such as I Corinthians 15:32:
“If the dead are not raised, ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.'”
Here Paul states his view: if there is no resurrection, no heaven, or eternity, he would live a completely different life than the one he is living now. In the first part of the verse he had said, “If from human motives I fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, what does it profit me?” He said in :30, “Why are we in danger every hour?” Paul was saying, why go through all that he was enduring, if there is no heaven, no resurrection, no eternal reward? If there’s nothing on the other side of eternity, then enjoy what you can now, because that is all there is: “eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”
In other words, Paul said that he would live differently if there were no eternity. He wouldn’t do some things he was doing now. He wouldn’t turn away from some things he was now avoiding. Eternity made a difference for him.
The question each of us should ask ourselves is, does the fact of eternity, and heaven, make a difference for ME? Are there activities I engage in, sacrifices I make, dangers I face, that will only pay off if there is a heaven? Are there things you would do in this world, that you are NOT doing, because of your faith? Would you live differently if all this wasn’t true? Paul said he would, and I agree with him. But a genuine Christian person DOES live differently, because it IS true. The question is, do you?